I was taking part in a phone interview, but it was a windy day and that was affecting my ability to hear the interviewer. I wanted to let them know about the problem, but couldn't think of the correct way to phrase it. What should I have said?

  • By the way, in English when we say someone's voice is breaking, it means that their voice is "cracking" or sounds creaky, like when they're crying, or we might say that a young man's voice is breaking when he goes through puberty and his voice deepens. What you're describing, we would describe by saying "You're breaking up." To break up means (among many things) to become broken. That extra up makes a lot of difference!
    – stangdon
    Mar 16, 2016 at 16:31

2 Answers 2


General things you could say

  • What was that?
  • I can't hear you.
  • I'm sorry, you're breaking up.
  • Can you say that again please?

Very descriptive things you could say in this specific situation

  • I'm sorry, I can't hear you well. It is very windy here.
  • I'm sorry, I can't hear you. It's too windy.

Two things could be happening:

1) You can not hear the interviewer because there is wind in the background creating white noise

I'm sorry, I can't hear you clearly, it sounds very windy over there.

Or high winds are interfering with the telephone signal to the base station

I'm sorry, you keep breaking up, it might be due to the high winds here.

The main problem with mobile calls is that the caller is not able to tell what they sound like during the call. For interviews, it is usually best to find a quiet area with a landline to ensure clarity.

  • You could also use "there is too much background noise" which means any noise that is masking the speaker.
    – user3169
    Mar 16, 2016 at 20:53

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